13/10/2014 - 15:46

Cannington showgrounds plan faces traffic delays

13/10/2014 - 15:46

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A $9 million plan to redevelop the Cannington Exhibition Centre and Showgrounds has hit a potential roadblock, with a key component of the proposal - a new Bunnings Warehouse at the Albany Highway site - forced back to the drawing board over traffic concerns.

Cannington showgrounds plan faces traffic delays
The existing Cannington Exhibition Centre.

A $9 million plan to redevelop the Cannington Exhibition Centre and Showgrounds has hit a potential roadblock, with a key component of the proposal - a new Bunnings Warehouse at the Albany Highway site - forced back to the drawing board over traffic concerns.

The Bunnings Warehouse development was set to provide funding for the Canning Agricultural Horticultural and Recreational Society’s substantial redevelopment of its showgrounds, under a multi-million dollar lease deal finalised earlier this year.

Bunnings was planning to invest around $28 million on a new Cannington store, with a total size of 14,000 square metres.

But the Metropolitan Central development assessment panel said the proposal did not address concerns over traffic congestion raised by the City of Canning and Main Roads WA.

“Clearly, there is a need to provide solutions to improve the existing local road network for it to sustain the additional traffic that is to be generated by the Bunnings Warehouse development in the near and foreseeable future,” the DAP said in its meeting agenda.

“The city is currently working on finding a solution for the existing traffic load through a detailed access and movement strategy to improve the road network to meet the future demands.

“This development proposal does not provide any solutions to satisfy the city’s or Main Roads WA’s traffic concerns and thus cannot be supported in its current form.”

CAHRS executive officer Dianne Begg told Business News the outcome was not entirely unexpected and she was optimistic the plan would not be completely derailed.

“We thought there would be more work that would be required to be done, and the DAP confirmed that,” Ms Begg said.

“Really it gives some direction on what elements need to be concentrated on.”

However, Ms Begg said the CAHRS redevelopment would be delayed until the Bunnings Warehouse was given the green light to go ahead.

“We are essentially relying on the Bunnings arrangement going forward for our funding, so we have to wait until there are no question marks hanging over the redevelopment before we can proceed with the major part of the work,” she said.

The other aspect of the redevelopment is the construction of a new track for Greyhounds WA, to allow for the Bunnings Warehouse and showgrounds expansion.

Greyhounds WA chief executive David Hobbs said the funding required to construct a new greyhounds track was already in place and was not reliant on the Bunnings deal.

Business News reported in September that Greyhounds WA had received $13 million from Racing and Wagering WA to facilitate the move.

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